- Famous advocate Harish Salve assists Forest bench of Supreme court as Amicus curiae. He presents a report- that
- Every year 3000 kids die in Delhi alone because of air pollution.
- Diesel is main culprit- produces 10x times more carcinogenic particles than petrol.
- diesel consumption is high because its cheaper than petrol (due to subsidies).
- Therefore, 30% cess should be levied on private diesel vehicles.
and this money should be used for three reforms:
- producing clean diesel [that has only 10ppm sulphur]
- Introduce Euro V and Euro VI norms.
- strengthen public transport system (buses and metros)
Supreme Court panel forwards this recommendation to Finance ministry. But Chindu says “no,we cannot levy any environmental cess on diesel cars. because…..
- Barely 13% of total automobiles in India are “private diesel vehicleS” = hardly any cess money will come.
- We already have started reducing diesel subsidies in phased manners.
- Soon there won’t be a big difference between the prices of diesel vs petrol.
- Desi automobile sector already facing slowdown and negative growth. if we impose 30% cess, it’d hurt the sales of diesel cars and SUVs.
|tax on tax||same|
|calculated only on tax liability||taken on tax liability + surcharge. and for a specific purpose e.g highway renovation, higher education or xyz.|
|suppose you’ve to pay Rs.1 lakh as income tax and government demands 10% surcharge then total tax to paid = 1.10 lakh||Suppose education cess is 3%. Cess is calculated on tax + surcharge.= 3% of Rs.1.10 lakhs.=3300 rupees.|
- meaning finally you’ll have to pay
- income tax + surcharge (on IT) + Cess (on IT+Surcharge)
Side note: What is Euro V and Euro VI norms?
- These norms define the maximum limit of pollutant that a vehicle can emit. (CO2, nitrogen oxide, sulfer and suspended particulate matter)
- If vehicle emits more than this limit, it cannot be sold in Europe.
- In Euro norms, as we move higher, the limits become stricter. Observe
|Euro norm||limit of respirable suspended particulate matter (RSPM)|
What about India?
We follow Euro norms under the lable “Bharat stage” norms.
|13 major cities of India||Bharat stage 4 norms|
|rest of India||Bharat Stage 3 norms.|
Digboi refinery is in news because of election- the politicians make claims and counter-claim on how UPA/Assam government has slowly destroyed the profitability of this refinery.
First the theory
- Petroleum reserves form in sedimentary basins.
- The flora and fauna decompose under heavy pressure and temperature => crude oil + natural gas.
- Digboi oil field = Sedimentary rocks of Brahmputra valley in Assam.
- Digboi refinery = First oil well of India. oldest and (perhaps) lowest output in world.
- Refinery hasn’t been upgraded, on a verge of financial-collapse due to shortage of man and raw material (crude oil)
- if refinery closes=> unemployment to the surrounding area (those rickshaw-walla, tea-vendors and so on)
(Interview Q.) Given its low output and low profitability, don’t you think Digboi refinery should be closed down, And instead put focus on hydro-electrical potential of North East?
Points to consider:
- First, make a fresh assessment- whether it is feasible to continue running this refinery.
- If the technological upgrades can solve the man-power crunch and increase the production levels, then no need to close down the refinery.
- It is true that North-East region has high potential for development of Hydro-electric power station,
- But we need to be cautious while exploiting this potential.
- We shouldn’t forget that Hydro-electricity has long gestation period and damaging effect on surrounding environment and leads to forcible migration/rehabilitation of hundreds of families.
- Hydro-electric plants interfere with the natural flow of the river drainage
- Haphazard development of the dams on the upper course of river had catalysed the Uttrakhand flood disaster.
- Besides, North Eastern region is home of many pristine forest tracts, national parks and rare flora and fauna. The forests have spiritual value for indigenous tribal people.
- Given its low output and low profitability, don’t you think Digboi refinery should be closed down, And instead put focus on hydro-electrical potential of North East?<br>
- We should impose Cess on Diesel Cars, and use that money to fight pollution. Do you agree?